CLINTWOOD, VA – JANUARY 4, 2023 – An up to $50,000 grant to be used to finance a feasibility study on two pieces of property in Dickenson County to assist in the marketing and economic development of the properties was awarded by the Virginia Coalfield Economic Development Authority (VCEDA) to the Dickenson County Industrial Development Authority (IDA) last week.
The funds will be used to hire an engineering firm to complete a feasibility study for the “Green Lot,” located in Clintwood; and the “Haysi High School Lot,” located in Haysi.
“The IDA has indicated the feasibility study is needed to determine what type of structure and/or business would be the most practical based upon location and size and lay out of the properties,” said VCEDA Executive Director/General Counsel Jonathan Belcher. “When completed, it will serve as another tool to assist in the marketing of the properties to prospective businesses and industry.”
VCEDA approved a $300,000 loan in 2016 and a $60,000 loan in 2021 to the IDA to assist in the acquisition and development of an approximately 1.14-acre lot adjacent to Clintwood Lumber in Clintwood, which is known as the “Green Lot.”
In 2020 and 2021, VCEDA also approved an up to $1.275 million grant to the IDA to assist in the demolition and site development of the old Clintwood High School and old Haysi High School properties.
The IDA’s application for funding noted the completed feasibility study will be utilized by both Dickenson County and its partners to market the sites to the appropriate type of business and/or developer and to identify any unknown constraints. The study will take into consideration multiple factors, including economic impact, technical impact, demographics, legal feasibility and implications, operational feasibility and scheduling feasibility.
According to Dickenson County IDA Executive Director Dana Cronkhite, the IDA has been working to take action toward objectives and goals identified in the Strategic Economic Development Plan adopted by the Dickenson County Board of Supervisors in March 2022. As part of that process, the IDA and county are working to evaluate county-owned property and to assess the best use of that property by having feasibility studies conducted.
“The purpose for these studies is to help the IDA define goals and objectives and to aid in developing a plan that has the largest viability for success,” Cronkhite said. “We recognize the future development of these properties is essential to our community and want to put our best foot forward when making decisions regarding how to best utilize them. We are appreciative for the collaboration and assistance from VCEDA in ensuring we are able to make well-informed decisions for the future.”
About Virginia Coalfield Economic Development Authority and Southwest Virginia’s e-Region: The Virginia Coalfield Economic Development Authority, created by the Virginia General Assembly in 1988 to enhance and diversify the region’s economy and help create jobs, markets Southwest Virginia’s e-Region and its focus on electronic information technology, energy, education, emerging technologies, and entrepreneurship. VCEDA is a unique economic development organization that manages funds for economic development projects from a percentage of the coal and natural gas severance taxes paid by coal and natural gas companies that operate in the region. Located in southwestern Virginia, the region includes Buchanan, Dickenson, Lee, Russell, Scott, Tazewell, and Wise counties and the City of Norton. www.vceda.us or www.e-Region.org.